Did Roseanne Barr just hint that this ugly chapter of her comedy may have a happy ending?
After vowing to stay off Twitter in the wake of Roseanne‘s cancellation, the 65-year-old comedian returned to social media to not only encourage her followers to vote in today’s election but to say “I’m making restitution for the pain I have caused.” Her tweet comes amid heightened speculation that ABC, together with Carsey-Werner Productions, is looking for a way to continue the comedy sans Barr.
As EW reported on May 30, talks have continued over whether ABC should salvage significant parts of Roseanne without having to say goodbye to some of the best actors on television (hi, Sara Gilbert, Laurie Metcalf, and John Goodman!). Though insiders stress that nothing is official and the situation remains fluid, there is talk of refocusing the sitcom around Darlene (Gilbert), who moved her kids back home to Lanford, Ill., in the comedy’s 10th season.
Keeping some of the Conners on the air for the 2018-2019 season would certainly take the strain off of ABC’s pocketbook. If the show goes away completely, the network would have to shell out a cancellation penalty to Carsey-Werner, which produces Roseanne, and in turn, the studio would still have to pay the cast. Options for Gilbert, Goodman, Metcalfe, and others were picked up shortly after the network announced in April that it wanted a second season of the revival, and for good reason: With an average of 17.8 million viewers a week, the show was the third-most watched TV series of the season and stood to make an estimated $60 million in ad revenue in its second season, according to the marketing firm Kantar Media. It also employed hundreds of people, something Barr acknowledged in one of her more humble tweets after the show was yanked: “I just want to apologize to the hundreds of people and wonderful writers (all liberal) and talented actors who lost their jobs on my show due to my stupid tweet.”
It’s unclear when, much less if, ABC will have an announcement soon about the future of Roseanne, so stay tuned. In the meantime, Gilbert expressed remorse after the hit sitcom was canceled on Monday’s episode of The Talk.
“I would like to say this has been a very difficult week,” she said on The Talk‘s first live show since ABC announced the cancellation of Roseanne on May 29. “A lot of people have been hurt by this. I will say, I’m proud of the show we made. The show has always been about diversity, love, and inclusion, and it’s sad to see it end in this way. I’m sad for the people who lost their jobs in the process. However, I do stand behind the decision that ABC made.”